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The Occidentalist Vol 2 Issue 2 October

Watching over the West since 1997

Milken Educator Award Juleen Jenkins-Whall recieves $25,000 for teaching excellence


Ways to disguise yourself this Halloween

The world at West 22 Exchange stuents are calling TCW their home this school year

HIGHLIGHTS West took the trophy once again in a win over Central

Casey Mutter Crowned Miss Michigan Teen, and headed to Nationals

2 The Occidentalist Letter from the editors


Meg & Chloe

(for pete’s sake) We fell in love in the fall. It was a foreign affair. We fell in love in Europe. They say love is its own language. We wanted to speak a new language. It was so beautiful that we couldn’t stay away. It was a love so strong that we wished it would last a lifetime. We didn’t need to speak the language of love, our love of the languages spoke to us. Sorry, this isn’t a sappy

Germany came to Traverse City, hosted by 16 West Senior High students for one week. One month later the Dutch took a turn and 20 students from the Netherlands traveled to good ol’ TC. Over the summer, Meg traveled to Germany and this spring, Chloe will journey to the Netherlands to complete the double exchange. Exchange opportunities come once in a lifetime, and, as we found out, they can be life changing. Before the love story, we didn’t fall in Dutch arrived in Traverse love with each other, we City, I (Chloe) hadn’t really fell in love with two foreign given a second thought to the languages. Two neighboring countries, two intriguing Dutch language, honestly, it just wasn’t on my radar, but languages. Germany and after I was given a chance the Netherlands, German to explore it (mostly on long and Dutch. Both of us had bus rides home from field the amazing opportunity of trips) I discovered a love for participating in a double exchange program with these it. I found the frequent guttural sound, one of the main countries. This included hosting a student this fall. In differences between Dutch September, 16 students from and German, to be endear-


is the best pg. 13

Photo: C. Foster.

ing and someday I hope to master it. Both of us hope to pursue our newly found love of language far into our futures. Life changing decisions have been made thanks to two spectacular exchange programs. In this issue, we take a look at all of the long-term exchange students attending WSH this year. Not everyone gets a chance to meet the exchange students, so we’re introducing and telling you a little bit about them here. We even took their favorite songs (and a few of ours) and compiled an international playlist for those days when you wish you could hop aboard a plane and travel the world. We hope you enjoy the issue! Editors in Chief

Queen of MI

Honorable teacher The world at West Halloween disguises Photo higlights

Delaney Johnson Staff Writer Kaitlyn Jewell Staff Writer

Casey Mutter ‘12, knows all about what it takes to be Miss Michigan Teen. She was crowned in Troy, Michigan on July 25th. When she won Miss Michigan Teen, she was then told she was moving on to Nationals. The Nationals this year are in Hollywood, California during Thanksgiving week. She is very happy and proud over the fact she will be attending. Casey loves running, yoga, cooking, promoting her platform of living a healthy lifestyle, and volunteers for the Healthy Schools Campaign and American Caner Society. She also loves hanging out with her friends and helping out in the community. “It takes a lot to win the pageants. Mostly hard work and dedication,” said Mutter. Casey has been doing pageants for seven

years, and started in fourth grade. Mutter did three different rounds at her Miss Michigan pageant. She preformed personal formal, personal talent, and interviewed with the judges. “I have a great voice that has helped with my personal talent for the judges,” said Mutter. “One thing you have to remember when the judges ask you a question is you have to stop and think before answering,” said Mutter. “When I practice a lot I don’t get nervous with the judges.” As they were sending a farewell to the past Miss Michigan, Casey grew more nervous. She was more than overjoyed when they announced her name for winning Miss Michigan. “It brought tears of joy to my eyes, while my family [and]

boyfriend sat in the crowd,” said Mutter. “I have made many friends in the pageants, I will see many of them in Hollywood.” Since she has won Miss Michigan, no one has really treated her differently. Casey said, “Adults treat me with a little more respect, because they know I’m mature. My friends don’t treat me any different now that I’m Miss Michigan. My family support is amazing. I have support from my family, the town of Traverse City, my boyfriend and his family,” said Mutter. “Even the community has helped me so much. They are helping me raise money to head out to Nationals here in November,” she said. “My favorite pageant was the one I just won, Miss Michigan,” Casey said. “I really knew what I

was doing on this pageant.” Casey has been in eight pageants altogether, and won two of them. One was Miss Michigan and the other was Young Miss County. “It takes me all year to prepare for one pageant: working on resumes, and raising money,” she said. “I have four to five dresses and only one evening gown.” “I have so many trophies because I have been with National American Miss since I was in fourth grade,” she said. “I can’t even count how many I have.” “I can’t even explain the words to describe how excited I am. I have been fundraising since I found out I was going to Nationals,” said Mutter. “I have recently had a crazy schedule. I am becoming well known.”


on the cover

3 5 6 8 13

Queen of MI

Personality The Occidentalist 3


Cover graphic by C. Foster with help from M. Clone.

Guaranteed Lowest Price!


4 7 10 11 14 15

We will beat anyone’s advertised price by $5 at our nearest location to our competitor in your town when you bring in their ad on registration day only. Honored for Segment I, II, and Road Test.


A Very Potter Craze


SEGMENT I: 24 Hours Lecture, 6 Hours Driving: (3 Weeks) Nov. 8 M,T,W,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. Dec. 5 M,T,W,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. Feb. 6 M,T,W,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. March 5* M,T,W,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. (*No lecture classes during Spring Break – March 23-30) Apr. 9 M,T,W,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. May 7 M,T,W,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. SEGMENT II: 6 Hours Lecture, Defensive Driving: (3 Days) Oct. 31, Nov. 1, 3 M,T,TH 3:15-5;15 p.m. Feb. 9, 14, 16 TH,T,TH 3:15-5:15 p.m. March 7, 9, 14 W,F,W 3:15-5:15 p.m. Apr. 17, 19, 24 T,TH,T 3:15-5:15 p.m. May 15, 17, 22 T,TH,T 3:15-5:15 p.m.

Stylish Titans International playlist Connect with us! News at-a-glance Exotic foods tantalize Traverse

Classes also held at Traverse City Central High School and Traverse City Cass Commerce Center $45 AUTO

Photo: A. Renault.



TRAVERSE CITY –Journey Wesleyan Church (South Airport Rd. east of Veterans Dr).

4 The Occidentalist A Very Potter craze

J-Whall The Occidentalist 5 Photo: C. Foster.

A Very Potter craze Julie Foote

Staff Writer

CALLING ALL POTTERHEADS! Have you fallen into a deep depression since the last Deathly Hallows movie was released? Do you find no comfort in the books, knowing that there’s hardly any hope for another one? Ah, but there is a light, you see. It has taken form on the Internet. No, I’m not talking about Pottermore, the lovely site opening to the public sometime soon. I’m talking about something on the very well known “Youtube.” Something amazing. “It just improved every quality of my life,” said Hannah Gauthier ‘13. “The creativity of it was just mind blowing,” said Teague Suitor ‘15. For Hayden Northrup ‘15, he said it made him “concerned for [his] mental health.” Aren’t these the dreams of every Harry Potter fan? Now, shall we get on with what this oh-so-amazing Harry Potter related thing is? It’s a musical. But wait, don’t let your smiles slip back into those depressed frowns yet! This is not the typical Broadway musical that causes many teenagers to slump in their seats and fall asleep. No, this is a musical done by Team Starkid (youtube username StarKidPotter), a theater group that surprisingly comes from quite close to home.

In April of 2009, a group of students from the University of Michigan with a budget of less than $150 dollars wrote an original scripted play. The play they came up with was titled “A Very Potter Musical” (AVPM for short), and it has been the underground rendition of Harry Potter since it was posted on Youtube on July 5th, 2009. For something on Youtube, it’s been a big source of entertainment and is approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes of pure awesomeness split into twenty-three 5 minute segments. I’m not a fan of spoiling things, so if you’re really uptight about not knowing anything before you watch something I’d advise you to put this article down, go to Youtube, type in ‘A Very Potter Musical’ and watch it before continuing. But for those of you who would like to know a bit more before watching (though I’m sure you’d love it anyways), listen up! To begin, it starts with a slow paced melody and a lone boy sitting on a stool, with a beam of light illuminating his head of curly darkbrown hair. From here the boy, Harry Potter (played by Darren Chris), sings a sad song describing how his summer was definitely not enjoyable with the Dursleys (is it ever?) and as the song’s beat picks up, the words “totally awesome” are used to describe the upcoming

year at Hogwarts. The musical then continues on with a mash-up of the first 4 years of Harry’s time at the school and an epic defeat of Voldemort (once again) to wrap things up. There are eighteen songs total that tell the story, all astonishingly well written. The whole musical is coated in blankets of hilarity that makes it the perfect pick-me-up at the end of a bad day. Shortly after realizing how huge of a hit AVPM was the group wrote a more originally based sequel which was posted on Youtube July 22 of 2010, about a year after the first one was posted. At West Senior High, there seems to be quite a few students who have seen and enjoyed A Very Potter Musical, and I was privileged to speak to a select few. Many of the interviewees enjoyed the first play much more than the second, which was simply explained by the fact that AVPM is based of off the storyline of the books and AVPS (A Very Potter Sequel) is based off of something completely created by Team StarKid. I guess that case is the same for the rest of the Potterhead’s society because if you look at the stats, AVPM has about 7,113,316 views (but with a one year lead), while the sequel, AVPS, only has about 2,048,975 views. Now, there happens to be a very

sad thing about the musicals and just StarKid in general. Darren Criss, who played Harry, left Team StarKid for Glee to play Blaine Anderson. For those of you who are probably against Glee and have no idea what this means, Blaine is an amazing singer from the Warblers (a Show Choir group from a private boy’s school) who also happens to be openly gay and a very lovable character. “I don’t see why he would leave StarKids to be a character on Glee. Harry potter is amazing and Glee isn’t. That’s all there is to it,” Alexis Hansen ‘15, said. Suitor said, “I was upset! You would leave Starkids for Glee? I mean, YOU’RE HARRY FREAKING POTTER!” On the other side of things, Northrup, being more of an optimist, said, “I feel that it’s strange he would make a transition from a theater group to a television show like that. Its good for him though that he got accepted into a TV show.” Everything about this web-produced musical leaves a happy feeling lingering, (except the fact about Darren Chris leaving) and I’ve found that this is the ultimate Harry Potter fan’s musical. Feel free to watch it over and over again, the typical AVPM fan already has all of the lyrics memorized!

Photo: K. Jewell.

An honorable teacher The Milken Family Foundation graciously awarded Juleen Jenkins-Whall a $25,000 award for her dedication to teaching excellence on October 27. Each year, the MFF surprises one lucky teacher in the state of Michigan out of thousands. This year, the state superintendent, Mike Flanagen, joined West via Skype to present the prestigious honor. Photo: C. Foster.

6 The Occidentalist Halloween costumes

Fashion The Occidentalist 7

Pre-made Halloween Costumes Courtesy of The Occidentalist. Just cut!

Master the art of disguise this Halloween with these tyopgraphical mustaches (typestaches)! Typestaches (as we like to call them) are simply {brackets} turned sideways. Their names come from what their typeface family is called. Yes, fonts are a beautiful thing.

{ {{{ { {{{

David Ulrich ‘12, was born in Elkhart, Indiana. David gets his inspiration from his older sisters. “I have always decided to dress differently from everyone else,” said David. “I don’t know when, I just always have.” He gets a lot of his clothes from second hand stores and from his sisters. David said he doesn’t remember being criticized for his outfits, he only receives positive feedback. David doesn’t have a particular outfit or article of clothing that he likes best, he just wears whatever is comfortable. Being self conscious with what David wears isn’t apart of his life. He just likes to be himself and unique in his own ways.

Mr. Rigid

Mr. Delaney

Mr. Kendric

Mr. Cheltenham

Mr. Edith

Mr. Bodoni

Layout: M. Sheehan

Mr. Cooper

Do you have a

Passionfor Fashion? Patrick Kiessling ‘13, is originally from Massachusetts. “I would describe my style as conservative, fun, and classy.” Patrick gets his fashion inspiration from his personality. He also likes to style his hair like Ryan Reynolds. His favorite stores to get clothes from are Pacsun and J.Crew. “They have a lot of cool clothes, I used to like American Eagle but I realized that it was a cookie cutter style,” Patrick said. No one has ever commented on his style in a negative way. “People like my Toms that say ‘A Journey is a destination.” said Patrick.  “My favorite thing to wear are my scarfs.”

Mr. Campbell

Photos: H. Farkas, K. Wyatt, O. Doherty. Layout: C. Foster.

Check out these students’ sassy style!

Hanna Farkas Staff Writer Katie Wyatt Staff Writer Olivia Doherty Staff Writer

Beverlie Yacks ‘14, from Beulah, got her clothing ideas from different countries and magazines. She decided in Middle School when everyone had the same style (Hollister, American Eagle, and Aeropostale) that she wanted to be original. Beverlie gets most of her clothes from H&M and also picks up varieties of clothing from other stores such as thrift and second hand shops. Sometimes people tell her that she looks weird or different but most people don’t comment on her style. “I would describe my style as girly, artistic, and vintage,” Yacks said. Her favorite outfit is a cute dress, leggings, a floral shirt, and  leather boots.Yacks polishes off her outfits with her own, homemade jewelry.

8 The Occidentalist Exchange students

The World at West

Brianna Sanderson Staff Writer Jessica Kendziorski Staff Writer Linny Milliron Staff Writer


[ ] [ ] [ ] [ ] Giulia Vicentini

Stockholm, Sweden Age 17

Rome, Italy Age 17

What is your favorite thing about the U.S.? “I would say the sports connected to the school.”

Are trends different in your country? “How you dress is pretty important in Sweden. [It] defines who you are.”

Rennes, France Age 18

Bordeaux, France Age 15

Sr Germain Av Mont d’er, France Age 18 Are trends different in your country? “Cooking is very important [and] soccer is the most important sport.”

How do people act differently in your country?

Maiaga, Spain Age 15

What is the biggest difference in how the school is run? “The school here is very big.”

“They dress quite crazy, but they’re very nice. More than in Italy.”

Lukas Schroeder

Sevilla, Spain Age 16

Achkout, Lebanon Age 15

What is your favorite thing about the U.S.? “It’s cheaper than Spain.”

How is Traverse City different than your city? “It’s a lot greener here. There’s more trees and grass.”

Breckerfeld, Germany Age 16 What is the biggest difference in how school is run?

“The driver license [age] is 16, in Germany it’s 18, and it is illegal to have a gun.

Leandro Candau

Amanda Sfeir

Hoai Yan

Langwedel, Germany Age 15 What is the most interesting thing about the U.S.?

“We have no middle school or high school.”

Lennart Wiese

Wedemark, Germany Age 16

Henning Rathje Stuttgart, Germany Age 16

What is your favorite thing about the U.S.? “I really like the refills of drinks in restaurants.”

How do people act differently in your country?

Ricarda Peters

“I think here they are a lot more religious.”

Heiligenhaus, Germany Age 17

Sirinuch Hittrawatt Chiang Mai, Thailand Age 15

Amalie Skaanild

What is your favorite thing about the U.S.?

Copenhagen, Denmark Age 16

What do you miss most about your country? “The freedom. There is a lot more rules here than in Denmark.”

Erik Gadsboell

Copenhagen, Denmark Age 16

What is the most interesting thing about the U.S.?

“There’s a lot of cheese in all your food.”

Layout & Graphics: M. Sheehan. Photos: L. Milliron.


What is the biggest difference in how the school is run? “During class we can’t listen to music. Or, in France, it’s ‘shut up and work.’”

What do you miss most about your country? “I miss my cat. I love my cat.”

Marina Torrico Ledesma

Simon Agren Uppsala, Sweden Age 17

Lucas Renaudin

Antoine Decazes

Milena Gonzales

Living in a foreign world full of strangers, forced to speak a whole new language; meet the exchange students! Check out the rest of their interviews at Leo Hoff von Sydow

Exchange students The Occidentalist 9

“Snow, because my country doesn’t have snow.”

Haonan Zhang Beijing, China Age 16

What is the biggest difference in how the school is run?

“Students are friendly and teachers are helpful.”

Vojtech Melecky

Karave, Czech Republic Age 17 How do people act differently in your country? “People here are more open-minded and more friendly.”

Yujiao Guo

Lennart Maerten Muenster, Germany Age 15

Christoph Bognar Kirchheim, Germany Age 16

“Everthing is huge; the cars [and] the food.”

What do you miss most about your country?

What is the most interesting thing about the U.S.? “You can eat chips with everything.”

“The language.”

Anika Kock

Beijing, China Age 16

Are trends different in your country? “We’re not allowed to wear make-up in China, and we have to wear uniforms.”

What is the most interesting thing about the U.S?

Jan Dittmar Isny, Germany Age 16

What do you miss most about your country? “The bread [and] German food. [It] is healthier and [has] more taste.”

Erlangen, Germany Age 15 What is the biggest difference in how school is run? “In Germany you are together with your class your whole life.”

Connect with us The Occidentalist 11

10 The Occidentalist Playlist

t s i l y a l P l a n o i t a n r e t n I

aniel D r e d o r B y b I'll be gone Bells n e k o r B y b Inside The Ghost runi B la r a C y b m’a dit Quelqu’un ttaque A e is u o L y Lea b Clueso y b r e n in w g Jay Ge o ik N y b 2 . nker Pt a T e in D ig Gi’ M in Capa a t p a C y b i Ayanam n Omar o D y b o r d Danza Ku y Kent b n e t t a H e en Vit Mannen I D s Alles a D y b n e m Nikita Mono and enassi B y n n e B y Cinema b otti n a v o J y b a Bell rzWeiss a w h c S y b e Samy Delux Jay Chou y b i a t a u h Ju e Mae h p o t is r h C ingue by D e u g in D Dingue kreis 18 r la o P y b in Allein Alle mae o r t S y b e c len Peace or Vio do Diao n a M y b y d Somebo h it W e c n Da

Layout & Graphic: M. Sheehan.

We asked our exchange students what their favorite songs were, and included a few of our own to compose a playlist of 19 cultural jams. Enjoy!


Editor in Chief

People who still don’t have their licenses. The age of 16 is a beautiful age. It’s the age of freedom, emancipation, carte blanche, whatever you want to call it, it’s the age our government has deemed appropriate to take charge of a huge responsibility: driving. Before we’re even legally adults, we’re allowed to operate a motorized vehicle, unlike many countries where teens have to wait until 18. Need I go on about how lucky we are that we can go wherever and do whatever we please (at our parent’s discretion) at such a young age? What I don’t understand, is why there are kids who are 17 and 18, and still don’t have their licenses. They rely on everyone else to get them places, which they don’t realize is a huge annoyance and inconnvience. A lot of kids have to pay for their own gas too, so having to drive in the complete opposite direction of where you’re going to pick up someone is not only maddening but also quite costly. Then, when you say, ‘oh no, sorry, my tank is low,’ or something to that extent, they get mad! It’s not my fault you still don’t have your license! Get up, go practice parking, and take the test. It only takes a few hours, if that, and you’re free. Now, special circumstances are a different story. Maybe your parents won’t let you get your license, maybe you’re paying for driver’s ed yourself and you don’t have the money, or maybe you’re even afraid to drive; whatever the reason, this rant isn’t aimed towards you. I’m talking to the people who refuse to get their license because they don’t want to pay for gas or take the time to do it and will just mooch off people as long as possible.

Connect with us!

The Occidentalist has its own website this year, where the staff will be posting exclusive stories and photos not published in the monthly issue. Have something to say? Shoot us an email with story suggestions, letters to the editors, or anything else you feel like saying. It may be published! But please, keep it classy. Like us on Facebook! View photos of yourself and friends at school events, get updates about the paper and other exclusive content linked to all our other media sources. Follow us on Tumblr and Twitter! We’ll be featuring certain photos from our Flickr here once in a while, as well as content from the Editors such as random thoughts and lastminute article additions. We take a lot of photos, and most won’t make the printed version. Find the surplus on our flickr, where you’ll probably see your face!

Jesus said: I have come that they may have life and that to the full.

John 10:10 Sponsored by Kathy & Chris

Staff Kerri Wosek Chloe Foster

Adviser Editor in Chief

Meg Sheehan Chase Schelling

Editor in Chief Business Manager

Aaron May Alyssa Ohanesian Asia McCann Austin McClintock Brianna Sanderson Chris Cortright Delaney Johnson DJ MacArthur Duran Brown

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Elizabeth Steinebach Emily Fancher Ivelis Rodriguez Hanna Farkas Jessica Kendziorski Julie Foote Katie Wyatt Kaitlyn Jewell Libby Lowran

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Photo highlights The Occidentalist 13

Exotic foods The Occidentalist 15

14 The Occidentalist News at-a-glance


Exotic foods

Tantalize Traverse

Orchestra aquires harp Chase Schelling

Staff Writer

This year, the TC West Orchestra has a new instrument that will add more sound variation to the orchestra, and that will standardize the instrumental selection. “The harp is a standard member of the orchestra and I felt that we needed to expand our offerings with strings to include such an important instrument,” said Ann Marie Jones, Orchestra Director here at West. “The harp as an instrument adds depth to the quality of our ensemble and a new dimension for students and audiences alike.” The orchestra recently purchased a

harp, which is now being used everyday in class during 2nd hour and will be used during all concerts and other orchestra events this year such as concerts, community events, recitals, and graduations. In addition to improving the sound of the orchestra, the harp is also simpler to play than a violin or cello. Meaning that more students may be able to participate in the school music program. “With this new instrument, we are able to include students in a school music group which may

not have been able or interested in participating before,” said Jones. The funding for the harp did not come from this year’s budget, but from bonds from the 2010-2011 school year. Bond money is set aside specifically for the purchase of new equipment for the entire K-12 music department. In addition to the harp, four electric instruments and a string bass were also purchased. This new equipments is a welcome addition to the orchestra, and will soon be introduced to West students.

eBooks come to the library Chase Schelling

Staff Writer

Academics at West have changed considerably the past several years with the advent of technology. All students have now been issued netbooks, which have nearly replaced pencil and paper work as well as textbooks in many classrooms. Grades are now checked online rather than on printouts on the classroom walls, and students no longer have to fight for a LMC desktop computer to do their work. This year, the WSH library has expanded technology even further. This year, the library launched a online book program, also known as ebooks. Audio books are also being purchased. There are multiple benefits to online books that influenced the begin-

ning of this program: They are convenient, they are more environmentally sound, and they are more cost efficient, and save the library staff a lot of time. “There was a lot of chatter state wide with ebooks because of the growing popularity of The Nook, Kindle, and Ipads,” said Genevieve Minor, the Media Specialist at West. There was a lot of thought that went into this. The majority of West’s audio book collection used by students for Language Arts classes were on CD’s, and not very many students have portable CD players anymore. The library also had a few MP3 players. “I didn’t like the environmental impact of using batteries,” said Minor. It started to make

since to simply provide a database of audio books and ebooks for students to use on their own electronic devices. The timing is right, with all students now issued school netbooks, and most students having smartphones, Ipods, and Ipads, it made sense to let students use the material on their own devices. Ebooks are convenient for students since everybody has electronic devices with them these days. “I didn’t see the need to purchase another device when the students would have a device of their own,” said Minor. “I wanted to capitalize on the new excitement.” Not only are these books helpful for the students, but they are also cheaper, and they are

a lot easier for the library staff to handle. Ebooks are more cost efficient to purchase than paper books, and with the school budget the way it is, every dollar counts. It is also much easier for them to handle because they don’t have to be outfitted with barcodes, security devices, pockets, or due date cards. There is also another benefit, while paper books can be damaged, ebooks cannot. So far, there are only a dozen titles that have been purchased. However, the program is going to be expanded. Half of this year’s library budget has been dedicated to the purchase of Ebooks and audio books. In the process of expanding this collection, feedback is welcome by

staff and students. You can access the ebook collection by going through the cloud. Select “WSH library,” Then go the TCAPS virtual library link at the top of the page. You will use your student ID to checkout materials just like you would checking out a regular book. The site walks you through downloading necessary software, but you can go the Greek Squad if you need help. While ebooks will not replace regular books, they are another option. They allows more choice and flexibility, and are easier for the LMC staff to handle, and are available 24/7. “As the media specialist at West, I just want to meet the needs of all my patrons, whatever their preference,” Minor said.

When people think of exotic they might imagine sun-drenched beaches, flora and fauna, and perhaps even the occasional touristy theme park. But when people really get into the idea of exotic, they have to think food! Crustaceans from foreign waters, pastas from across the world, and even weird insects and animals that have been prepared just for our picky taste-buds are right here in Traverse City. “I consider exotic foods to be anything from a tropical place,” said Wilson Wolfe ‘13. Foods that are considered exotic don’t have to be some strange bug from Indonesia shipped over the ocean, covered in chocolate, and served at a party. They can be types of sushi or dragon fruit, eel and frog legs too. Many people are drawn to the challenge of eating a strange food. They think of it as a way to not only experience something new, but as something that they can add to their list of accomplishments. They can say, “I ate that and it didn’t taste disgusting!” It’s just about taking worthy risks. Americans are very used to the food they eat, but is the rest of the world? McDonald’s is located in 119 countries around the world on six of the seven continents. With statistics like that, no wonder our food isn’t so exotic. Food from America can, at some times, be considered exotic, even to Americans. Alligator, rabbit leg, and sea-

Graphic: M. Sheehan

weed salads all tend to be a bit out there. We import squid, octopus, and snails so that chefs of all kinds can create these multiple dishes for other people to enjoy. We can get some of these foods right here in Traverse City. Red Ginger, Soul Hole, Panda North, and Chez Peres all supply cultural experiences and exotic foods. Traverse City allows these experiences but sometimes we have to travel. Europe, India and Japan supply us with exotic ideas all the time. Traveling can offer a new twist on exotic foods also, even if they are found right here in Traverse City. Sights, sounds, smells, and people all enhance foods that can be amazing all on their own. Exotic food is all about the experience as well as the tastes one can discover. When someone is out on a vacation with their family and confronted with a new type of food they have never tried, they should try it just so they can say they did. All this is great, but what can be exotic? “Any food from a foreign country,” said Axel Trigaud ‘13. As it turns out the technical definition for the word exotic from is “originating in or characteristic of a distant foreign country.” While people are always going to think of different things regarding the word exotic, we can all agree that exotic food can be strange, tasty, and even surprising!

Libby Lowran Staff Writer Duran Brown Staff Writer

“I think it’s always a good idea to try something before judging it,” said Wolfe, “I’ve eaten some really ugly food but it turned out to taste amazing.” It’s always a good idea to keep an open mind when looking at what could be considered ugly food because we never know what might astonish our taste buds next. Food that looks like blah, could be someone’s new favorite food, but first they have to give it a chance. Food can be fun, tasty, and exotic, but people need to go out and explore their options. Traverse City gives us wonderful options because it has so many different restaurants that offer all kinds of food. They don’t serve food, they serve an experience and an opportunity; something that not any other city can give us. We are lucky to live in the area we do since it provides us with some pretty tasty food, but in order to love and understand food in an authentic way, we have to be open to other things, even if it scares us. Who knows, maybe we’ll travel the world, go crazy, and enjoy exotic dishes everywhere! It’s just a matter of being able to take risks and try out the scary, ugly, and even strange smelling foods around us.

The Occidentalist Issue 2  

Traverse City West Senior High's student newspaper.

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